Date & Time:
Dec 30, 1943 at 2100 LT
West Freugh - West Freugh
The crew left RAF West Freugh at 1953LT for a night training exercise. While approaching the Isle of Man, the crew encountered engine problems and the pilot elected to make an emergency landing in poor weather conditions when the twin engine aircraft hit a cliff located 1,5 mile from Port Soderick. All five crew members were killed.
Crew (4th AFU):
F/Sgt C. G. Eckersley, pilot,
Sgt H. Peters, navigator,
Sgt G. R. Tippett, bomb aimer,
Sgt H. C. Thompson, wireless operator and air gunner,
Sgt L. J. Henley, wireless operator.
An Inquiry into the accident found that the primary cause of the accident was “ the shearing of one of the propeller Boss belts, which caused spasmodic and intense vibration, and loss of engine revs as it came into contact with the nuts of the front cover. It was though that the Pilot decided to make an immediate forced landing, preferably on water near the coast, but that he overshot aiming north while flying in bad visibility, and faced with cliffs ahead, he opened up to try and clear them, but crashed head on into them.”